Gallery Paris Beijing is pleased to present High Place, one of the first photographic series (2003/2004) by the Chinese performance artist Li Wei.
Born in 1970 in Hubei (a province in central China), Li Wei began his artistic studies by devoting himself to traditional painting. His encounter with the avant-garde artistic community in Beijing’s East Village from 1996 led him to begin creating performances in public spaces.
In the series High Place, Li Wei defies space and the laws of gravity by humorously confronting the danger and the fear associated with the void. A provocative art, his performances are also feats of technical prowess. Attached by a cable, Li Wei lifts obstacles as well as bodily and spiritual constraints with acrobatic figures.
We see him fall, float and soar, always through an ultra contemporary landscape, in an allegory of Beijing’s urban revolution.
A refusal of the imprisonment of the body and the mind, his photographs bear witness to a real skepticism with regard to the evolution and modernization of China.
In the face of his intuitive fear of falling and of the failure associated with current socio-economic concerns in China, Li Wei lets himself go, allowing himself total freedom of thought by constructing visual metaphors like so many odes to weightlessness.
Now internationally recognized, he has exhibited his work at the Rencontres de la Photographie in Arles (2007) and Paris’ la Villette Park (2012), and his most recent performance piece (2014) took place within the context of the Art Paris fair at the Grand Palais, with the support of Gallery Paris Beijing.